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Juneteenth and You: How to Navigate the Holiday When You're Not Black

Originally published June 19th, 2020.

I get questions from time to time about all sorts of things. How to manage single parenting and homeschooling.

Red wine.

How to get through a divorce.

Red wine.

And how to be a less shitty white person. The answer to that question isn’t red wine.

Sorry, not sorry.

The most recent, “How do I not screw up while being white” question I was asked about was Juneteenth and how to recognize the holiday when you’re not Black. I figured it’s been a while since my last post so I would put my response here for all my white readers trying to be better in 2020. I’ve expanded on my original answers to offer a bit more depth to all of you. You’re welcome.

So, you want to celebrate and recognize Juneteenth:

  • CHECK YOUR FELLOW WHITE PEOPLE! You need to be doing this all day, every day to start with. And you need to come harder on Juneteenth for Black lives. Make folks uncomfortable. Remember white feelings are NOT more important than Black lives. Check your mama, your daddy, your Biden loving aunt. All. Of. Them. Make sure to check yourself too. Juneteenth is a workday for white folks. If you don’t go to bed tired with a significant dent in your wallet, you’re celebrating the day wrong.

  • Give money to the Black folks you learn from during the year. It doesn’t matter if it’s your coworker, the spouse of one of your white relatives, or an activist/educator of the Black experience. Pay. Them. Most have either a cashapp, PayPal, or Pateron account. Leave them something to show you appreciate their labor. Not sure how much to give? Start with 3/5ths of what is in your bank account right now. Your ancestors said we were only 3/5ths of a person and built you a world that continues to treat us that way so if you’re unsure about how much to give you can part with 3/5ths of your money.

    • Resources to aid you in this: Your bank account

  • Shower the Black folks in your life with love. Leave a bottle of wine on their doorstep, send them a Visa gift card, buy them dinner, a spa gift certificate. Anything to bring them joy. Don’t ask them for shit! They don’t need to thank you. You don’t need to post all over social media about what you did for them. Move in silence when leaving love and use your voice for points 3 and 4!

    • Resources to aid you in this: Your bank account

Begin your work now:

cashapp: $RayvenHolmes

Copyright(c) 2020 Rayven Holmes

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